U.S. Constitutional Law I(T) — Syllabus
Fall 2017
Professor Schnably
Mon, Tue, Thu 11:00 am-12:20 pm
Room F200
Office, Office Hours, and Faculty Assistant

Ground Rules

MANDATORY: You must read the Ground Rules before the first class, and be familiar with them.


Final Exam Cover Page

This is the Final Exam Cover page.

Remember to bring your Casebook (CB), Casebook Supplement (CB Supp.), and Supplement (Supp.) with you.

Good luck!

Office Hours

I will be available in my office December 7, from 10-noon and from 2:30 to 5:00 pm

Make-up Classes

Here is the schedule of make-ups and extended class times. All classes will be held in F200:

  • Monday, Oct. 2: 11:00 am-12:20 pm (former fall break): Videotape
  • Tuesday, Oct. 3: 11:00 am-12:20 pm (former fall break): Videotape
  • Thursday, Oct. 5: 11:00 am-12:20 pm (former fall break): Videotape
  • Monday, Nov. 6: 11:00 am-12:45 pm (extended class): Videotape
  • Tuesday, Nov. 7: 11:00 am-12:45 pm (extended class): Videotape
  • Thursday, Nov. 9: 11:00 am-12:45 pm (extended class): Videotape
  • Monday, Nov. 27: No class.
  • Tuesday, Nov. 28: 11:00 am (Optional review session): Videotape

All the meeting dates above will be taped. Note: The cancellation of class on Monday, November 27, and the devotion of Tuesday, Nov. 28 to an optional review session, are both subject to the following proviso: If there is another storm causing additional loss of days, a first option would be to use the Tuesday, Nov. 28 meeting as a class; another option would be to hold class on Monday, Nov. 27.

Books, Supplements & Other Materials


For all the assignments in this syllabus, I suggest that you read over the questions about the material posted on the Current Assignments page before you begin reading the material, and then go over the questions after you have read the material. We may not discuss every single question posted on the Current Assignments page, and I may ask questions in class that I haven’t posted, but in general the questions on the page will reflect what we’re going to go over.

I.    Introduction to the Study of Constitutional Law

      A. Constitutional Texts: US, Canada, South Africa
          1. What Is the Best Text?
              a. The U.S. Constitution
                  CB xli-lvi (US Constitution); CB 1-7
              b. Other Constitutions
                  The U.S. Constitution, amended as proposed by Levin, CB xli-lvi (review) and Supp. 3-13
                  The Canadian Constitution, Supp. 14-46
                  The South African Constitution, Supp. 47-127
                  Supp. 128-132 (readings on the Canadian and South African constitutions)
          2. Does the Text Tell Us Everything?
              a. Reference re Secession of Quebec
                  Supp. 133-142, 143 [Quebec case and statute]; CB 82-84, CB xlvii (Art. II § 2 cl. 2)
              b. The Eleventh Amendment to the U.S. Constitution
                  Supp. 144-151
      B. The Adoption of the U.S. Constitution
          CB 7-25
          Supp. 152-153 (New York v. U.S.)
      C. Interpreting the U.S. Constitution: Three Case Studies
          1. Heller v. District of Columbia
              CB 48-52
          2. The Bank of the United States and the Powers of the Federal Government
              CB 53-65; 160 (U.S. Term Limits v. Thornton) ; CB 362 (note 6)
              Supp. 154-156
          3. The Foreign Emoluments Clause
              Supp. 157-216 (the Current Assignments page has information on what you need to focus on for this reading)

II.    The Role of the Federal Courts in the Constitutional Framework

      A. The Power of Judicial Review
          1. Marbury v. Madison
              CB 25-38
              Supp. 217-220 (pardons)
          2. Martin v. Hunter’s Lessee
              CB 38-44
              CB Supp. 5-6
              Supp. 221 (The Judiciary Act of 1789, § 25)
      B. The Role of Judicial Review
          1. Judicial Exclusivity in Constitutional Interpretation
              CB 44-48
              CB Supp. 6-7
              Supp. 222-223
          2. Natural Law and Judicial Review
              CB 65-69; 454-458
      C. Limitations on the Powers of the Federal Courts
          1. Political Control of the Supreme Court
              CB 69-82, 155-158
              Supp. 224-230
          2. Advisory Opinions, Standing and Political Question Doctrine
              a. Advisory Opinions
                  CB 82-84 (review); CB xlvii (Art. II § 2 cl. 2)
              b. Standing
                  i. Introduction: Allen v. Wright
                      CB 85-89
                  ii. Conceptualizing Injury; Widespread Injuries
                      CB 106-117 (through Note 4)
                      CB xliii [Art. I § 6 cl. 2]
                  iii. Likelihood of Injury
                      a) “Procedural Injuries” and the Role of Congress in Determining Standing
                          i) Lujan
                             CB 89-97, 117-118 (Note 5)
                             CB Supp. 25-29
                      b) Clapper
                          CB Supp. 7-17
                  iv. Prudential Standing
                      CB 106-107 (Note 2) (review); CB 118-121
                  v. State Standing
                      CB 97-106 (Massachusetts v. EPA)
                  vi. Emoluments Clause Cases
                      Supp. [Part II] 231-293
              c. Political Question Doctrine
                  i. Baker v. Carr
                      CB 121-126, 137 (Note 6)
                  ii. Redistricting Cases after Baker v. Carr
                      CB 138-141; CB 133-134 (Note 3)
                      Supp. 294-300
                      Transcript of Oral Argument, Whitford v. Gill, (Sup. Ct. Oct. 3, 2017) (optional)
                  iii. Other Cases
                      CB 126-136, CB xli, xliii [Art. I §§ 2,3,6,7], li-lii [14th Am. § 3]
              d. Standing and Political Question Doctrine: Bush v. Gore
                  CB 142-153; CB xlv [Art. II § 1 cl. 2], CB l-li [Twelfth Amendment]
              e. Ripeness & Mootness
                  CB 153-155
                  Supp. 301-307 (optional)

III.    Separation of Powers: The Allocation of Powers within the Federal Government

      A. Introduction
          CB 367-370
          CB Supp. 54
      B. Approaches to Determining the Distribution of Federal Powers
          CB 370-381
      C. The President, Congress, and Foreign Affairs
          1. Executive Authority in Foreign Affairs
              a. Curtiss-Wright
and Dames & Moore
                  CB 382-386, CB 388-389 (Notes 1&2)
              b. Medellin and Zivotofsky
                  CB 386-388, 389 (Note 3); CB 409-411
                  CB Supp. 55-58 (including addendum to CB 388)
          2. The Use of Force
              CB 389-392 (through Note 2), 406-411
              Supp. 308-313

          3. The “War on Terror”
              a. Hamdi v. Rumsfeld

                  CB 392-400
              b. Hamdan, Boumediene, and Other Issues
                  CB 400-406
      D. Domestic Affairs
          1. The President
              a. Executive Privilege, Impeachment, and Immunity
i. Executive Privilege
                      CB 411-416
                  ii. Impeachment; Immunity
                      CB 416-424; CB xliii [Art. I § 6 cl. 1]
                      CB Supp. 59-61 (Ziglar v. Abbasi)
                      Supp. 315-317
              b. Pardons
                  Supp. 318-331
          2. Nondelegation/Administrative Authority
              CB 424-429, 435-439
              CB Supp. 61-62
          3. Administrative Agencies and the Separation of Powers
              a. Textualist/Strict Separation Approaches
                  i. INS v. Chadha
                      CB 429-435
                  ii. Bowsher and Metropolitan Airports
                      CB 439-441, 451 (Note 5)
              b. Pragmatic Approaches
                  i. Morrison v. Olson
                      CB 441-448
                  ii. Mistretta and PCAOB
                      CB 448-451 (through Note 4)
                      CB Supp. 63 [first paragraph of section marked “Page 451”]

IV.    Federalism: The Allocation of Powers between the Federal and State Governments

      A. The Purpose of the Commerce Clause / The First Period of Interpretation
          CB 159-169, 172-175 (through Note 2), 177-179 (Notes 4-9)
          CB xliii-xlv (U.S. Const. Art. I §§ 8 and 10), xlviii (Art. VI), l-lii (Tenth and Fourteenth Amendments)
      B. Before the New Deal: The Second Period of Interpretation of the Commerce Clause
          1. Commerce Clause Limits on Congress’s Powers
              CB 179-185 (through “Note: Prohibiting Interstate Transportation”); CB 169-170;
              CB 185-193 (through Note 4)
          2. Fourteenth Amendment Limits on State Powers: Lochner v. New York
              CB 750-766; CB 65-69 (Calder v. Bull, natural law) (review)
              CB xliii (Art. I § 8 cl. 3), CB xlv (Art. I § 10 cl. 1), CB li (Am. XIV, § 1)
      C. The New Deal and Its Legacy: The Third Period of Interpretation of the Commerce Clause
          1. Jones & Laughlin, Darby, and Wickard
              CB 192 (Note 4)-198, 171-172
          2. Later Commerce Clause Cases
              CB 198-203; CB Supp. 38
          3. The End of Lochner, and Its Aftermath
              CB 766-776
      D. Contemporary Interpretations of the Commerce Clause
          1. “Internal” Limits on the Scope of the Commerce Clause Power
              a. United States v. Lopez
                  CB 203-212, 214-215 (Notes 1 & 2), 217 (Note 5)
              b. Morrison, Raich, and Comstock
                  CB 212-214, 215 (beginning with Note 3)-217 (though Note 4),
                  CB 217 (beginning with Note 6)-218
          2. Health Care: The Individual Mandate
              CB 218-240
              CB Supp. 39-40 (Notes 6 & 7)
      E. Other Powers of Congress
          1. Taxing
              a. In General
                  CB 293-296
                  CB xliii (Art. I § 8 cl. 1); CB xli (Art. I § 2 cl. 3); CB lii (Am. XVI)
              b. Health Care: The Shared Responsibility Payment (Penalty)
                  CB 296-301
          2. Spending
              CB 301-310
          3. Commandeering? The Tenth Amendment as an “External” Limit on Congress’s Powers
              CB 354-364 (through Note 7)
          4. Health Care: The Medicaid Expansion
              CB 310-322
              CB Supp. 44-46
          5. The Treaty and War Powers
              CB 346-351, 322-325; CB 175-177 (Note 3), 351-353
              CB Supp. 38, 50-51 (Bond)

V. Federalism: Constitutional Limits on State Powers

      A. Introduction
          CB 240-247
      B. Strict Scrutiny of State Burdens or Restraints on Interstate Commerce
          CB 247-251, 256 (Note 3)
      C. Facially Neutral Statutes/Legislative Motivation
          CB 264-268, CB 504-505 (Moreno), 506-507 (through carryover paragraph) (Romer),
          CB 508 (Note)-510 (through first two lines) (Minnesota v. Clover Leaf Creamery),
          CB 273-278, 279-280 (ignore any references to Exxon, which is not assigned)
      D. Preemption
          1. Gade v. National Solid Wastes Management Ass’n
              CB 288-291
              Supp. 337-345 (Gade)
          2. Arizona v. United States Optional
              CB 283-288; CB 288-289 (Note 1) (review)
              Review: CB 38-42 (Martin v. Hunter’s Lessee), 53-62 (McCulloch v. Maryland),
                      CB 160, 362 (note 6) (U.S. Term Limits v. Thornton)
              CB xlv (Art. I § 10 cl. 3), xlviii (Art. VI §.; 2), li (Amend. XIV, § 1)







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